Domestic violence is a serious issue in Illinois as it is in every other state. Domestic violence is unique because victims come from many different backgrounds. People of all ages, all levels of income and education can be victims of domestic violence.
Although people typically think of physical abuse as the main form of domestic violence, emotional abuse can be just as damaging.
According to one source, emotional abuse is the most common form of domestic violence. When someone is living with an emotional abuser they may start to feel powerless and lose their sense of self. Some would say being in a relationship with an emotionally abusive person is one of the worst things someone can experience.
However, there are ways to deal with an emotionally abusive partner. When a spouse is yelling and screaming, it is often best for someone to walk away and directly remove themselves from the situation. People may also find it effective to confront the person to let them know they want to be treated with respect.
In addition, people may find it best to seek outside help through a support group, counselor or therapist. Couples may even consider going to counseling together.
Most importantly, victims of emotional abuse need to avoid bad coping mechanisms. Victims may try hurting themselves or turn to drugs and alcohol, but these types of coping mechanisms are likely to only make things worse.
Additionally, people need to know that they have legal rights. If someone is living with an abusive spouse they may be able to seek an order of protection. Speaking with an experienced attorney may be the best first step.
Source: GMA News Online, "Emotional abuse: The most common type of domestic violence," Veronica Pulumbarit, Mar. 8, 2012